Monday, February 2, 2009

Trial and Error

limp leather turquoise thread
Me with some paper, a needle, no instructions - this is how I like it, thinking about how I want to look the book when it is finished, finding a solution and doing it. Well, this time it didn't work out quite so good. Apparently, I'll have to find some instructions somewhere. Above you can see the book I tried this weekend, click on the image to see it in more detail. I wanted to use this bright blue hemp string for a binding which created some of the problems - it is really thick and is not evenly strong. Together with such a thread I should have taken thick paper which swallows some of the bulk. Instead I decided to use lined regular writing paper, which was not remotely soft enough.
First I had to decide on how I wanted to stitch leather and pages together. I have never seen an instruction for a binding like this, and wanted to find a method myself. In a first try, I bound every signature individually to the leather strips at the back. This looked good, but the bulk at the spine was unarguably too much with a knot inside every signature. So I rebound it like you can see above. Now I don't like how the thread on the back isn't horizontal.
The closure also came out slightly lopsided and definitely not perpendicular to the front edge of the book. Also the back cover is not well cut. Ah well, it was a try.

I ordered "Limp Bindings from Tallinn" written by Monica Langwe Berg on Friday (it was my birthday, and I still had to spend some money from my grandmother) and now I am waiting for it so show up in my postbox. The next leather binding I'll try will be based on an instruction, and in the meantime I'll try to figure out how to do this style in a satisfying way.
If you want to try something new yourself why don't you have a look at the blog Moon Bindery. The recent series 'Adventures in Medieval bookbinding' was the reason I decided to have the book "Limp Bindings from Tallinn" for myself. You'll find pictures and descriptions of some of the bindings, together with instructions, so you can have a go also without the book. Have fun!

Ich habe mal wieder einfach darauflos gebunden. Mit Leder in der einen Hand, Faden in der anderen, dacht' ich, es könnte wohl nicht so schwer sein. Naja, ich habe das Buch, das ihr oben sehen könnt dreimal neu gebunden und bin noch nicht wirklich zufrieden. (Ein Klick auf das Bild bringt euch auf seine Flickrseite und da kann man es nochmal größer sehen.) Aber jetzt lasse ich es erstmal so wie's ist.
Mir gefällt nicht, dass die Fäden am Rücken so chaotisch wirken und nicht horizontal sind. Das liegt daran, eic ich die Seiten zusammengebunden habe. Da werde ich mir nochmal was Neues ausdenken müssen, wie ich das eigentlich machen will. Überhaupt ein in Leder gebundenes Buch in der Hand zu halten, ist allerdings immer schon was Schönes, selbst wenn's mit der Bindung im Detail nicht so geklappt hat. Das ist schon erstaunlich!

Wenn ihr selbst mal etwas versuchen wollt und auch Instruktionen auf Englisch folgen könnt, werft doch mal einen Blick auf die Serie "Adentures in Medieval Bookbinding" auf dem blog Moon Bindery. Da findet ihr Beispiele und Tutorials aus dem Buch "Limp Bindings from Tallinn" von Monica Langwe Berg. Viel Spaß damit!


DymphieM said...

Wish I had the courage to make a book like this. It looks absolutely fab! I'm eying the limp bindings of Tallinn by Monica Langwe Berg for some time now... it seems your post is the small push needed to take the jump and purchase that book, thanks :)

Marina said...

i'm sorry if i seem a bit "nosy", but i have seen two longstich binding at youtube before trying my fisrt (and, so far, oly) one with that kind of stiches.

part 1:

part 2:

i don't know... but perhaps it might help you! :]

anyway, like i said on flickr, i like it very much just the way it is!

my best wishes!

Büchertiger said...

Thanks, Marina, for the links!

You don't sound nosy, just helpful.
I know these videos and I have made already some of these long stitch books. I wanted to try something else here. The stitching on the spine looks different than in usual long stitch and in the videos.

@DymphieM:Limp bindings are much easier than the case bindings you do - just give it a try! I have no doubt you will make beautiful books. And leather works like magic - it looks good no matter how much you mess up ;-)